Possible shortcomings and ambiguities of the discourses on discipline

Luiz Carlos Faria da Silva

The present article analyses recent discourses by Brazilian educators dealing with the issue of the relationship between education, discipline and social transformation. It indicates the existence of two interpretative models which delimit these discourses and raises the hypothesis that understanding the issue in terms of these two models would cause: the disqualification and the delegitimization of the disciplinatory procedures indispensable to both the human action in general and the educative action in particular, a tendency to the anematization of the exercise of any form of power or authority, a hypertrophy of the individual's sovereignty and of the individual's evanescent wile, and the sacralization of the personal spontaneous actions. These theoretical stances have been inspiring educational practices whose results show to be antagonic to the results explicitly aimed at by these educators: failure of an education, apparently open and democratic, supposedly leading to a social transformation and a critical stance, but actually alienating and conservative, inhibiting the modern spirit of citizenship.

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